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The other night I was making a mental list of all the things I needed to get done. Laundry, grocery shopping, dressers need cleaned out, windows are filthy, you all know what I mean. Once I started making this list, all I could think about was how hard it is to get all these things accomplished, ever. This in turn led me to think about how in the world would I get these things done if I was working. Gone for 8+ hours, 5 days a week? Damn, I'd be screwed.
Once upon a time, I had a full time job. It seems like so long ago, but I guess if I consider it in mommy years, it is. I have not had a "paying" full-time job since I had kids. The first year of Mini-Me's life I taught part time, and even that was difficult and I only had ONE kid then. I honestly, and at the risk of sounding cliche, don't know how full-time working mothers do it. Not that in many ways we aren't ALL "working" mothers, but I have a hard enough time keeping up with the house while being in it, or around it, all day. I just can't imagine being gone all day and still being responsible for all the things that I already do around here. What I am saying here is that I have SO MUCH RESPECT for those of you who leave your house every day and head to an office, or classroom, or wherever you may work. So many of the arguments I have read as of late about these so called "mommy wars" seem to pit working moms against stay at home moms. I seriously don't get it. I didn't know we were fighting against each other.
Most of the time you read articles about how working mothers are neglecting their children because they ship them off to day care all day, or how stay-at-home mothers have clingy, whiny, pansy-ass kids, blah, blah, blah. Why does it have to be an old fashioned pissing contest between working mothers (either working in an office, or working from home) and stay at home moms? In actuality, aren't we all, as some say, "just" mothers? Ugh, I can't stand that statement. I mean really, "just" a mother? I am "just" working my ass off to raise five functioning adults. Five little people that I hope someday can take care of themselves and raise more functioning adults, and when the time comes can take care of me just as I have taken care of them. I am not "just" a maid, a chef, a chauffeur, a counselor, a teacher, a fashion consultant, a barber, a laundress. I am a mother, a wife, a woman. I am all this that has been put together into one package and sent on a journey. This journey is not one to be taken lightly, and definitely one that should not have to be taken alone. It requires support and encouragement in order to be successful, not negativity and harsh words.
Aren't we more like "super" mom, not "just" a mom?
Artwork by Mini-Me :)
We have all been given the gift of motherhood and it is up to us to nurture that gift. To take this gift and open it and take it on our journey. Why should we have to take this journey alone? Why can't we support each other instead of criticize? I always thought that encouraging words bear more significance than words that are hurtful. This really came to light for me this week when my very dear friend Andrea from Twins Happen bravely wrote this post about her recent trip to Wal-Mart . I feel confident enough in my relationship with her that I think I can accurately say that when she wrote this post, she in no way, shape, or form expected to be berated and put down the way she was not only on her own post, but on Facebook and Mamapedia as well. I give her big KUDOS for not being afraid to write this and for taking the criticism that she has received with nothing but class. I know I have been in this position myself multiple times. Not because I am a bad mother, or because I don't pay attention to my kids. It could be because kids are, what's the word? Oh yeah, KIDS. I know PITA can seem to squeeze his big self right on out of those buckles in 2.0 seconds flat. All it takes is one quick reach to grab something behind me and he is out. I am sure other women have about crapped their pants at some of the things that my kids have done in a store, but I am only doing the best I can. It doesn't mean that I have too many kids. It doesn't mean I am a bad mother. It just means I am a mother. I, like Andrea, never claimed to be the perfect one.
I'm just gonna throw this thought out there; don't you all think it is time to quit being so damn critical and instead become more encouraging of each other? We are all here on the same journey, trying to accomplish the same goal we just all do it in our own ways. I may not parent the same way you do, and we may not see eye-to-eye on every little thing regarding motherhood. Some of you are vegetarians and we are not. Some work outside the home, I do not. Some make sure their kids have helmets, knee and elbow pads when they ride their bikes, I do not. It doesn't mean that you are right or I am right, it just means that we are all different. Last time I checked, being different was not a bad thing, it is what makes us unique and special. I am sure that if we looked hard enough, however, we could find more things that make us similar than things that make us different. Either way, it's time to quit the judgemental snark and support each other in what should be the goal of this journey that we all desire to achieve; to raise fully functioning adults. Adults that have caring hearts and can pay their own damn bills. Adults that know how to treat each other with respect and love. Adults with responsibility. Remember, they are going to be the ones taking care of US someday.
Are YOU up for the challenge?